Training 4 Trainers: Сhallenge yourself and join us with passion through this intense and challenging road!”

By | February 11, 2014 at 11:30 am | European Events | Tags: ,

The new year brings new amazing events and “Traning for Trainers”(T4T) is one of them! The event will take place in Budapest, Hungary from 30/03/2014 – 06/04/2014, where five highly-qualified trainers are looking for active members of AEGEE or another student/youth organisation, who are eager to support others in their learning and development process, share their experiences and looking for a comprehensive and challenging experience to get them started on their journey as a trainer. This is a promising event that is going to become a platform for a new generation of trainers. The AEGEEan had an opportunity to talk to the content managers Bernardett Polya and Irina Buriana.

The AEGEEan: Girls, first of all, please tell our readers about yourselves!

Bernardett: “My most common nickname is Berni, but people often think I’m a boy, so Bernadett is also fine in English. The world of trainings came into my life in 2010, when I happened to become the local coordinator of Human Resources European School (HRES). I was amazed to see that after some theory participants opened up, shared ideas, had discussions. It was a really interactive and creative process which was really new for me after so many years of formal education. And then I said…OK, I don’t know how the trainers did this, but I want to learn how to do that.

My next step was to apply and attend the Leadership Summer School in 2011 when I decided for sure that I wanted to go deeper into non-formal education and afterwards got accepted at the Youth Trainers’ Academy which was the first cross-organizational training for trainers organized in Ljubljana. There I got the self-confidence and the basic toolkit I needed, and a lot of connections all over Europe, so I jumped into the training world and delivered so far close 400 hours of training in two years. I was able to coordinate the next HR European School organized in Kyiv and the same year 2012 I made it to become a Trainers Coordinator at Leadership Summer School 2012 in Budapest. (LSS is one of the biggest and most high qualitiy non-formal education event connecting many youth NGOs). And I figured I needed to make some new steps to higher levels. After I had finished university in Summer 2013, I was invited back to lead a seminar – at the Corvinus University of Budapest – on organizational behaviour. This gave me also a kick and a much deeper, more conscious knowledge of non-formal education. I felt I would like to share with others the non-formal education mindset, because I strongly believe this is a key for our generation. We have to break the existing patterns and go for a more collaboration focused way of learning and working, valueing diversity and creativity.

As Irina came along with me on this path – we met at LSS 2011 in Cluj, she as organizer, me as participant -, we attended our Training 4 Trainers together and coordinated LSS 2012 together. We both are crazy in our own ways and high performers, so we decided to create a Training for Trainers event, which we plan to make it a bit different and more experiential than other ones we delivered. This is super challenging and exciting for us and an opportunity to learn.”

Irina: “My name is Irina Buruiana and I come from Cluj-Napoca, Romania.

I will bring another perspective to the local and say that I am not officially part of a local AEGEE group, but I am part of EFPSA (European Federation of Psychology Students’ Association, which represents a highly diverse network of psychology students working on a voluntary basis by and for psychology students of Europe and consists of 32 psychology member assosiations. It was established in 1987, at the first International Congress of Psychology Students in Portugal). I can say that my AEGEE story began with shared events of Cluj-Napoca’s local group and then my implication as a trainer in AEGEE events started with HRES 2012, when along with Bernadette Polya we delivered trainings in the event.

Moving this tradition forward we applied as being managers for this AEGEE T4T, so taking up the challenge of creating a motivational, professional event along with other three amazing trainers.”

Who should apply for this event?

Berni: “Those who are not only willing to become trainers – everyone can call themselves trainers – but wanting to be proactive in this field, not only to react to open calls, but to create events, learning opportunities. We want participants to challenge themselves and join us with passion through this intense and challenging road. We are waiting for such people who have already some experience in the youth field, who have worked with groups, organized and attended events and have met non-formal methods already, enough amount to have a fire inside for it and are capable to follow such a training.”

Why is it important for AEGEE to have more, experienced trainers?

Irina:We strive for a qualitative event where participants’ inputs bring value and color to their experience. This is one of the reasons why we would like to have experienced participants at our event. Besides this, we believe in community intelligence and experience, therefore we would like to foster knowledge through creating collective experiences. Another aspect of this is that as a trainer having good connection and possibility to develop your network is one of the most powerful assets. Why? Because we are living in a changing world where we need to adapt and to find people/connections with whom we can develop our ideas, dreams and ideal projects. What better opportunity to do that by gathering people with the same interest and desire of investing in themselves as professionals and also on a personal level that strive for the same thing as maybe you strive for: making the world a better place.

How can this event contribute to this? First of all by creating the safe place of this development and investment. On a more practical base, this will be a good opportunity for them to practice and to receive technical and personal feedback on their performance. Another important aspect will be that we will strive to create a space where everyone’s knowledge will create their personal trainer toolbox for further development overall and on specific topics.”

Berni:Trainers are facilitators of learning and multiplicators. If AEGEE has more highly-prepared trainers who are proactive, that means they’d create more quality events and raise the learning experience of participants. The better trainers we have, the more people we can impact and encourage / help them to develop and take actions to improve their local community and have a positive impact on their environment.

I believe non-formal educational methods are not only connected to trainings, it is a mindset, a way of living. If you know yourself and the way how to handle others, you can reach everything. You can manage yourself better, improve group work, have a better quality in your relationships with others, reveal and raise potential of yourself and others”.

How many people are there in your team?

Berni: “With Irina we are the content managers of the training, but we have three more great members in the team. Ursa (Slovenia) from the AEGEE-Academy, Kristyna (Czech Rep.) from EFPSA and Julia (Germany) from AEGEE. Already an alumni,
Julia works as a professional in political education of youth in Berlin, Ursa finishes her studies on NGO manamgent,  and Kristyna is a psychologist. Also Irina is a graduated psychologist and works as a professional in the HR and training field.”

What are the goals and program of T4T?

Berni: “Regarding the content, we have already set the goals we want to achieve during the event:

  • to empower, inspire and motivate participants to become active future generation of Academy trainers: this means, strong team building and follow-up approach before, during and after the event;
  • to support and encourage participants to experience and identify themselves with a learning approach: this means safe learning environment, self-development, a place to experiment and get to know the NFE mindset;
  •  to provide participants with a basic toolkit for trainings: to design and build ta raining framework from scratch, being able to deliver a training and receive feedback, learn how to use facilitation as a group tool;
  • to have a proactive approach towards themselves, their learning process and future events.

In practice this would mean: homework and get to know before the event part of the event to reach a common ground content would be provided mostly by trainers and after halftime of the event, it would be given more in the participants’ hands based on their expressed learning needs. The participants will also have to deliver a training session as a practice project to our group (little training session) and also to external participants as open sessions (3-4 hour session). We will support and help this process with group and personal reflection and feedback and by the end of the event helping them to shape their next steps after the event, with an action plan and a mentor.”

How should people apply to T4T?

Irina: “In order to apply to the AEGEE T4T you need to first want an investment in your skills and to be curious on what a trainer is developing. After you sense this desire, you just need to apply the usual technicalities as every signing in process has: a short form where you will find some questions regarding your experience and also your motivation for the event. One of the most important aspect of this T4T are the people, so as a bonus for the form with the questions there is a request for a short video where we could see the participants and also to hear their motivation.”

Is there anything you would like to add?

Irina: “The only thing that I would like to add is that I encourage you to apply to this event and to take a chance in applying to this event because it has the chance of changing your perspective upon life and opportunities.”

Berni:We also are in talks with a startup called TrainedOn to be one of their first users and experiementers to design the T4T trainings on their platform and experiement as well with something new”

Written by Anna Smailikova, AEGEE-Kyiv

Comments are closed.

© The AEGEEan, 2011-2013